Faculty Profiles

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Name Abbott D. Weiss
Title Founder, Abbott Weiss Consulting
Faculty Position Senior Lecturer
Areas of Expertise Supply Chain and Operations Management
Education Doctor of Business Administration, Logistics, Harvard Business School;
Master of Science, Management, MIT; Bachelor of Science, Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, Webb Institute

On teaching supply chain and operations management:
“I am fortunate to have both the theoretical foundation and 40 years of real-world experience working with supply chains. And, I was trained as an engineer, so I understand where our students are coming from, and what they don’t yet know. What I enjoy about the MSEM program is that our students bring the analytical skills and the intellectual curiosity into the classroom, along with their observations from the workplace. Together we examine the themes and characteristics of effectively managed supply chains and operations, discovering the real reasons why some corporations do it well and some do it poorly. In today’s global market and networked economy, it’s imperative for our students to understand the many ways in which their work impacts other parts of company operations, and vice versa.”

On teaching style:
“I don’t lecture much. I have found that the best way to learn is by doing – or at least by participating in hands-on simulations and discussions; therefore I provide an orchestrated path through those experiences. We use a variety of cases to enable them to apply what we study – in these modules and others. I try to get students to think for themselves, to integrate their experiences with readings and frameworks we provide. If necessary, I’ll take a contrarian point of view so they can develop the skills to defend their case. I design the class for lots of discussion, critical thinking, tackling ambiguity, defending points of view with hard data and analysis, and examining change in real organizations. My students learn about their own leadership styles and how to manage by influence. They are challenged to grow not only professionally, but also personally.”

On teaching goals:
“My goals are to expose our students to structural frameworks and tools for how to think about problems and solutions related to supply chain and operations management, and to provide them with the opportunities to apply the ideas in real situations. The most important thing I do is teach them how to communicate a well-reasoned, well-informed point of view effectively to management. When I see our students really think and then communicate their ideas clearly and concisely, I know I am doing my job.”